ALBUM REVIEW: FLYING COLORS THIRD STAGE: LIVE IN LONDON

Supergroup pass live concert with flying colors



“Welcome to the rarest of all sightings, rarer than a UFO sighting, rarer than a sasquatch sighting. A Flying Colors sighting - here on stage, in London.” Mike Portnoy


Supergroup Flying Colors made London's Shepherd's Bush Empire their last stop on their 9 date European tour. For those who weren't able to attend this rare event of extraordinary musicianship, the band have released this monumental concert across all formats. The Blu-ray and DVDs in the Earbook also include bonus material of music videos and concert footage of their Morsefest 2019 performance in Cross Plains, Tennessee.


It's not often that you get this calibre of musicians in the same space and who feel comfortable enough to improvise and play off each other. The fact that they don't do this very often only makes the event even more exciting. The band are clearly energised by the chemistry they create and the explosion it ignites on stage. There's no sign of tour fatigue or complacency here.


Their latest studio album ‘Third Degree’ had only been released two months previously, and songs from that record make up just under half to the night’s setlist with the rest of the songs coming from the 2012 ‘Second Nature.’


As for the DVD, the spectacle of video backdrop and sweeping camera are impressive if you want a visual of the evening, but honestly, this impressive live recording allows the music to speak for itself.


Every musician brings their own style to the table and they weave seamlessly be it jazz fusion, prog or rock. This crossing over of genres and styles is what makes the band so riveting to listen to. Epic track 'Infinite Fire' allows bassist Dave LaRue to let rip and 'Forever in a Daze' gives him space to show off the bass' percussive nature. Faultless drum work form Portnoy can be heard on every track. 'Kayla' brings out the best in the expressive vocals of Casey McPherson. Put all this together with the heavier guitar work of Steve Morse and the endlessly impressive keyboard playing from Neal Morse and you have a recipe for some real musical magic - that is something very rare indeed.


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